The Death Of Antigone By William Shakespeare Essay

1169 Words Feb 28th, 2016 5 Pages
Antigone, when initially informing Ismene of Creon’s edict to leave Polyneices unburied, said, “so there you have it and you soon will show/ if you are noble, or fallen from your descent.” In this statement she differentiated between their “descent” from princesses of Thebes, as a result of their father, and actual “fallen”-ness which would occur if Polyneices was left unburied by them. At this point, then, Antigone considered that she and her sister were in a moment of darkness before the illumination of their status or place in the world, dependent on whether they would take action to bury Polyneices. She did not consider her loss of status equivalent to fallenness, and believed her fate was yet to be decided, saying “And yet, as men’s hearts know, I have done no wrong/I have not sinned before God. Or if I have/I shall know the truth in death” (). Death was not the punishment Creon intended; Antigone anticipated it as a moment of revelation about the holy righteousness of her burying Polynieces.
As Ismene proceeds to bemoan the consequences of Antigone’s course of action, Antigone responds that she no longer wants Ismene as a partner, saying “be what you want to; but that man shall I/bury.” Again here Antigone sees a greater significance to the burial of Polyneices than just the physical act of funeral rites, or even the spiritual, religious significance of it. When she says “Be what you want to,” she acknowledges that her decision to bury him will define her existence in…

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